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Stone, Robert L. (1921-2009) to Jacob Stone and Beatrice Stone

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC09620.152 Author/Creator: Stone, Robert L. (1921-2009) Place Written: Mariana Islands Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 25 December 1944 Pagination: 2 p. : envelope ; 27.6 x 19.4 cm.

Summary of Content: Addressed to "Dad + Bee." It's the 25th, but it feels like any other day. They did get a "delicious turkey dinner." It's easy to lose track of the days as they focus on how many missions they can complete in a month. He thanks Bee for the "swell birthday card" and complains about the mail. He's getting on with his missions, but things are tense as they aren't sure if the army will stick to their forty-mission requirement. Conditions are improving, all the boys have wooden floors and frames in the tents, and they finished an enlisted men's club. They're hoping to build an officers club soon. He saw Barry, and "dug up an extra case of beer for him to celebrate" on Christmas Day.

Background Information: Robert "Bob" Stone was a Bombardier in World War II and served in the Pacific Front. These letters, were compiled by Bob's wife, Sheila M. Stone, and Ali Adair into ...a book named Letters in a Box. This book details Bob's service to his country, and his life after the war. Bob's letters were donated to the collection by his wife, Sheila M. Stone, in 2017. It contains a variety of letters, postcards, patches, pins, photographs, and scrapbooks that relate to Bob's training and combat missions. See More

Full Transcript: [draft] The Marianas
December 25th 1944
Dear Dad & Bee-
Well here 'tis the 25th but somehow it doesn't seem any different than any other day of the week. Sure we had ...a delicious turkey dinner but aside from that there was none of the usual Christmas spirit. One day is like the next out here and you lose all track of day and date. The only thing we keep track of is how [inserted: many] missions we can get in during a month. I'm afraid that all the tradition of the various holidays will be lost until the war is over. After all, I guess that is the most important thing right now.
Bee, I want to thank you for your swell birthday letter which arrived a couple of days ago. It would have arrived on my birthday [strikeout] [inserted: were] the mail not so darn slow. Almost all letters take about three weeks and sometimes longer.
Everything is about the same out this way. Slowly but surely we're getting on with our missions but it's still a long way to go to reach the forty mark, and there's always the chance that they may raise it. Formerly it was only thirty missions and raised to thirty-five and while we were back at Kwajalien it was boosted to a mere forty-what next? [2]
Finally things are shaping up in the squadron to make conditions a bit more bearable. All of the boys have wooden floors and frames in their tents now. The squadron built a club for the enlisted men where they can get a beer and coke. I believe they are under way to build us an officers club. We certainly need a place to drink beer and work off steam because it's fairly dull to spend all your time in a tent.
I don't recall if I told you or not but I saw Barry a few days ago and he was in best of shape. I believe he may be over tomorrow again. For Christmas I dug up an extra case of beer for him to celebrate.
As usual I'm lacking any further inspiration toward writing an interesting letter. There's so little to write when you live as routine a life as we do- enough for now.
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People: Stone, Robert L., 1921-2009
Stone, Jacob, fl. 1894-1985
Stone, Beatrice Hecht Marks, 1901-1962
Marks, Barry, 1926-1983

Historical Era: Great Depression and World War II, 1929-1945

Subjects: World War IISoldier's LetterMilitary CampMilitary ServiceAir ForceAviationCensorshipHolidays and CelebrationsFood

Sub Era: World War II

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